Frank Lampard is primed for an emotional return to Chelsea to replace Maurizio Sarri after his appointment as Juventus manager was confirmed on Sunday.
The lure of the job is obvious for Lampard but it will not be an easy task.
Here, Sportsmail takes a look at some of the challenges facing Chelsea’s manager-in-waiting Lampard.
Frank Lampard is set for an emotional return to Chelsea to replace Maurizio Sarri as manager
The English midfielder won a host of honours with Chelsea – including the Champions League
STYLE OF PLAY
One of the low points for Maurizio Sarri during his brief Chelsea stay was hearing his own supporters respond to watching his team with chants of ‘f*** Sarri-ball.’
The plaudits he received for his football in Napoli were not replicated in England and Sarri decided it was best to return to Italy rather than try and persist.
Lampard will return with untold credit in the bank as a club legend. The fact that his football will be different too would further make his appointment a welcome change.
Maurizio Sarri is off to Juventus after just one turbulent season as Chelsea manager
Lampard transformed Derby’s style of play, injecting more energy, dynamism and pressing
One of the noticeable changes he made at Derby was to inject more energy, dynamism and pressing into their play.
His central defenders were also given more proactive roles and encouraged to play out from the back and initiate attacks.
Richard Keogh’s transition from looking awkward with that responsibility at the start of the season to setting up goals in the final third in the play-off semi-final at Leeds was indicative of the change under Lampard.
There will be a real sense that some of the old Chelsea order will be restored if Lampard is appointed manager.
Not only will the club’s all-time top scorer be back at Stamford Bridge and in charge in the dugout, but behind and above him will be a support network that knows the workings of the club inside out.
Jody Morris will come with him from Derby and remain Lampard’s right-hand man.
Jody Morris, another former Chelsea player, will follow Lampard as his right-hand man
Morris is a former Chelsea midfielder who came through the club’s academy before going on to coach in the academy.
Joe Edwards worked alongside Morris and has been earmarked for a promotion from head of the under-23s to a first-team role in Lampard’s new setup.
Claude Makalele has been lined up for a role alongside a number of other ex-Chelsea players looking after the clubs army of youth players.
And overseeing the new structure will be Petr Cech who is set to return as sporting director once his Arsenal contract expires at the end of this month.
Chelsea under 23 coach Joe Edwards would also be in line for a promotion under Lampard
BRINGING THE KIDS THROUGH
This is one of the big attractions to Lampard, especially with Morris working with him, for the Chelsea hierarchy.
Their two-window transfer ban means they will be forced to lean heavily on some of the best products in their successful academy to bolster their squad.
With so many at the stage in their careers where now is the time to make that jump into the first team there is a feeling among some that the transfer ban may not have come at the worst time.
Defender Fikayo Tomori enjoyed a fine season under Lampard’s mentorship at Derby
Promising midfielder Mason Mount also enjoyed an encouraging season on loan at Derby
Lampard has worked with two of them Fikayo Tomori and Mason Mount at Derby last season and they took big strides forward under the Blues-boss in waiting.
Tammy Abraham, Reece James and England under-21 captain Jake Clarke-Salter are some of the other academy products who could benefit.
Two more, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Callum Hudson-Odoi, made big breakthroughs last season and the Chelsea side could have a real academy-heavy feel under Lampard.
Ruben Loftus-Cheek could also become a key player in the Chelsea side under Lampard
THE HAZARD CONUNDRUM
Losing the club’s best player, Eden Hazard, before he arrives is a significant handicap to start with for Lampard.
Fortunately, before Chelsea’s transfer ban was announced they were able to strike a deal to bring Christian Pulisic to Stamford Bridge from Borussia Dortmund for £58m.
Chelsea’s new manager will have to cope without Eden Hazard, who signed for Real Madrid
Callum Hudson-Odoi’s emergence and impact was also timely for Chelsea. He is one of England’s best young players and certainly has the potential to fill the Hazard void.
He might start that process by inheriting the Belgian’s No.10 shirt next season provided he can be convinced to stay.
Hazard’s exit also opens up Hudson-Odoi’s preferred left-wing spot. The responsibility for replacing Hazard might be a big one for two young players, Pulisic and Hudson-Odoi, but they at least offer Chelsea hope for the future.
Chelsea were able to secure the signing of Borussia Dortmund’s Pulisic before the ban
The transfer ban also means good news for Callum Hudson-Odoi, another academy graduate
One of the big concerns of the Chelsea hierarchy was the lack of connection between Maurizio Sarri and the Chelsea fans. He was not too concerned about their opinions and not afraid to show it either.
He lacked the diplomacy required in certain occasions. Lampard will have no such worries as a club legend and the feel-good factor that will surround his appointment will galvanise the club.
Following the lack of a relationship between Sarri and the supporters, Lampard’s arrival could create a real bounce effect. His status will also buy him breathing space if things start slowly or he hits a tricky patch.
Supporters will have more patience with Lampard than other managers in the past.
The club might too – a little – especially with the transfer ban limiting the changes he can make. But only so much. Ban or not, legend or not, there will still be demands and reaching the top four will remain the minimum requirement.
Lampard celebrates Chelsea’s 2012 Champions League triumph with the fans in Munich
The Chelsea fans paid tribute to Lampard when they played Derby in the EFL Cup last season